Taken by Trees
is the solo project of former Concretes singer Victoria Bergsman, who probably remains best known for her vocal cameo on the Peter Bjorn & John favorite "Young Folks"; the brand-new Other Worlds
(Secretly Canadian) is her third album under that name, and the second in a row that she's steeped in the music of places far from her native Sweden. She made 2010's East of Eden
in Pakistan, sprinkling it with the sounds of qawwali, and for the new album she drew inspiration from time she'd spent in Hawaii—though the music is generically "tropical" rather than specifically Hawaiian. Bergsman has cited as influences the Beach Boys instrumental "Diamond Head," a kind of 70s approximation of Martin Denny's Exotica
that mixes nature sounds with pedal steel, and an instrumental by Jamaican dub master Augustus Pablo called "AP Special," whose chill xylophone melody floats over a spacious groove. Her backing tracks adorn lazy, wide-open reggae rhythms with steel-pan drums, liquid steel guitar, bubbly synth, and environmental sounds (crashing waves and chirping birds). She clearly had a relaxing vacation on the islands, because the heavy-lidded drift of her modest but pretty melodies makes it sound like she's high as a kite or about to doze off—sometimes it also makes the album feel a bit slight compared with her previous work. Fortunately there are some sharp pop tunes mixed in ("Only You," "In Other Words"), and even the sleepy stuff has an amniotically calming charm. —Peter Margasak See also Wednesday. Jens Lekman headlines; Taken by Trees and Big Search open. 10/2 is sold out and 18+.